47th Battalion (Australia)
The 47th Battalion was an infantry battalion of the Australian Army. It was raised in 1916 for service during the First World War and took part in the fighting in the trenches of the Western Front in France and Belgium before being disbanded in early 1918 to provide reinforcements for other Australian units that were suffering from a manpower shortage following the German Spring Offensive. In 1921, it was re-raised as a part-time unit of the Citizens Force, which became the Militia. During this time it was based in south-east Queensland and in 1927 it became known as the "Wide Bay Regiment". During the Second World War the 47th Battalion took part in fighting in New Guinea and Bougainville, before being disbanded again in January 1946; the battalion was re-raised before being subsumed into the Royal Queensland Regiment in 1960. Raised in Egypt in 1916 during the First World War, the 47th Battalion was formed as part of the expansion of the Australian Imperial Force that took place following the Gallipoli campaign.
At this time it was decided. In order to achieve this, new battalions were formed by splitting existing units and using a cadre formed from their experienced men along with freshly trained reinforcements sent from Australia. Taking its experienced men from the 15th Battalion and its new recruits from Queensland and Tasmania, the 47th Battalion formed part of the 12th Brigade, attached to the 4th Division. Following this, the battalion was transferred to France and Belgium where it fought in the trenches of the Western Front for the next two and half years. During this time, the battalion fought in a number of significant battles, including the Battle of Pozières in 1916 and the Battles of Bullecourt and Passchendaele in 1917. In early 1918, the battalion was involved in turning back the German advance during the Spring Offensive, taking part in the fighting that took place around Dernancourt, it was during this fighting that one of the battalion's members, Sergeant Stanley McDougall performed the deeds that led to him being awarded the Victoria Cross, Australia's highest decoration for gallantry.
After this, casualties amongst the units of the Australian Corps led to the order for three brigades to disband one of their battalions – the other two battalions disbanded at this time were the 36th and 52nd Battalions – and as a result of this the 47th Battalion was disbanded on 31 May 1918. During its service in the war, the battalion lost 1,564 men wounded. Members of the battalion received the following decorations: one Victoria Cross, four Distinguished Service Orders and one Bar, one Member of the Order of the British Empire, 13 Military Crosses, 13 Distinguished Conduct Medal and one Bar, 86 Military Medals and four Bars, two Meritorious Service Medals, 16 Mentions in Despatches and two foreign awards. A total of 11 battle honours were awarded to the 47th Battalion for their involvement in the war. In 1921, the decision was made to perpetuate the battle honours and traditions of the AIF by re-organising the units of the Citizens Force to adopt the numerical designations of their related AIF units.
At this time the 47th Battalion was re-raised by the amalgamation of a number of existing Queensland Citizens Force units that had contributed personnel to the battalion during the war, with the main body of personnel coming from the 2nd Battalion, 47th Infantry Regiment. In keeping with its regional identity, depots were formed in a number of locations in the Wide Bay–Burnett region of south east Queensland, including Tiaro, Murgon, Kingaroy, Childers and Bundaberg, with Battalion Headquarters located in Maryborough. In 1927, territorial titles were adopted by the units of the Citizens Force and as a result the battalion adopted the title of the "Wide Bay Regiment"; the strength of the part-time military in the early inter-war years was maintained by a mixture of voluntary and compulsory service, but in 1929, following the election of the Scullin Labor government, the compulsory training scheme was abolished and in its place a new system was introduced whereby the Citizens Forces would be maintained on a part-time, voluntary basis only.
It was renamed the "Militia" at this time. The decision to suspend compulsory training, coupled with the economic downturn of the Great Depression meant that the manpower of many Militia units dropped and as a result the decision was made to amalgamate a number of units, although the 47th Battalion was not one of those chosen. During the inter-war years, the battle established alliances with the Loyal Regiment and the Edmonton Regiment. Following the outbreak of the Second World War, due to the provisions of the Defence Act which precluded deploying the Militia outside of Australian territory, the government decided to raise an all volunteer force for overseas service, known as the Second Australian Imperial Force; as such while the Militia would provide a cadre for this force, its main role was to provide training to conscripts as part of the compulsory training scheme, re-established in early 1940. During this time, the Militia were called up in cohorts for periods of continuous training lasting between 30 and 90 days and the 47th Battalion undertook a number of these camps early in the war.
On 17 March 1941, however, as tensions were building in the Pacific, the battalion was mobilised for full-time war service. At the end of 1941 it was brigaded together with the 15th and 42nd Battalions to form the 29th Brigade; the 29th Brigade was attached to the 5th Division and undertoo
2nd Division (Australia)
The 2nd Division commands all the Reserve brigades in Australia. These are the 4th in Victoria, the 5th in New South Wales, the 9th in South Australia and Tasmania, the 11th in Queensland, the 13th in Western Australia, the 8th spread across the country; the division is responsible for the security of Australia's northern borders through its Regional Force Surveillance Units. The division was first formed in Egypt in July 1915 during World War I as part of the First Australian Imperial Force; the division took part in the Gallipoli campaign, arriving in the latter stages and traversed to the Western Front in France and Belgium where it had the distinction of taking part in the final ground action fought by Australian troops in the war. After the war ended and the AIF was demobilised, the 2nd Division name was revived and assigned to a Citizens Military Forces unit in 1921. During the inter-war years, the division was based in New South Wales with its headquarters Parramatta. During World War II, the 2nd Division undertook defensive duties on the east coast until mid-1942 when it was sent to Western Australia.
In May 1944, the division was disbanded as the war situation no longer required large numbers of garrison troops to be held back in Australia. Post war, the division was re-raised in 1948, except for a period from 1960 to 1965, the division has existed in one form or another since then; the Australian 2nd Division was formed from reinforcements training in Egypt on 26 July 1915 as part of the Australian Imperial Force, raised to fight in World War I. The division was formed from three brigades – the 5th, 6th and 7th –, raised independently in Australia, sent to Egypt for further training, it was intended that the division's commander would be James McCay, but he was wounded on 11 July, repatriated back to Australia after the death of both his wife and father. As a result, the command of the division went to Lieutenant-General Gordon Legge. Due to the pressing need for more soldiers for the Gallipoli Campaign, parts of the 2nd Division was sent to Anzac Cove in mid-August 1915, despite the fact that the division was only trained.
There, they reinforced the New Zealand and Australian Division. The rest of the division arrived by early September; the 2nd Division held a quiet stretch of the original line, only a part of the division saw serious fighting during around Hill 60 on 22 August. The 2nd Division was evacuated from the peninsula in December, returning to Egypt, where it completed its training and formation while the 1st Division was split and used to raise two new divisions as the AIF was expanded prior to its departure to Europe to fight on the Western Front. A pioneer battalion, designated the 2nd Pioneer Battalion, was added to the division at this time; the 2nd Division started to arrive in France in March 1916. In April, it was sent to a quiet sector south of Armentières to acclimatise to the Western Front conditions. In mid-July, with the British offensive on the Somme dragging on, I Anzac Corps was sent to join the British Reserve Army of Lieutenant General Hubert Gough who intended to use the Australian divisions to take the village of Pozières.
Due to the casualties sustained by the Australian 1st Division's attack at Pozières on 23 July, it was replaced by the 2nd Division on 27 July. Continuing the effort started by the 1st Division, the 2nd Division attacked on 29 July. However, due to the hurried preparation, the troops forming up for the attack were detected and the supporting artillery proved inadequate, leaving large segments of wire in front of the German position intact; the division sustained 3,500 casualties for little gain. After several days of disrupted preparations, the 2nd Division attacked again in the evening of 4 August, capturing the OG2 trench line and part of the crest. Alarmed by the loss of the defences, the Germans initiated a counter-attack the following day, which the Australians repulsed; this was followed by a sustained artillery bombardment that inflicted heavy casualties. The position of the Australian salient meant that the soldiers received artillery fire from the front and rear – including from German batteries near Thiepval.
After 12 days on the front line and sustaining 6,846 casualties, the 2nd Division was relieved by the Australian 4th Division on 6 August. After a brief rest, the 2nd Division again relieved the Australian 1st Division from its position beyond Pozières on 22 August. Attacking on 26 August, the 2nd Division succeeded in penetrating past the fortifications at Mouquet Farm only to be attacked from the rear as troops from the German Guards Reserve Corps emerged from the fortified underground positions at Mouquet Farm; these counterattacks succeeded in forcing the 2nd Division back from Mouquet Farm. After sustaining another 1,268 casualties, the 2nd Division was relieved by the Australian 4th Division on 26 August. On 5 September, I Anzac was sent to Ypres for rest; the division anticipated spending winter in Flanders. Throughout early October, the division undertook a number of minor raids in the sector, but in the middle of the month it was relieved by the British 21st Division and was recalled to the Somme for the final stages of the British offensive.
This time they joined the British Fourth Army, holding a sector south of Pozières near the village of Flers. Despite heavy mud, the Australians were required to mount a number of attacks
Duke of Lancaster's Regiment
The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment is an infantry regiment of the line within the British Army, part of the King's Division. Headquartered in Preston, it recruits throughout the North West of England; the regiment's formation was announced on 16 December 2004 by Geoff Hoon and General Sir Mike Jackson as part of the restructuring of the infantry, when it was to be known as the King's Lancashire and Border Regiment. The regiment was given its new name in November 2005. Formed of three regular army battalions, it was reduced to two regular battalions, plus an Army Reserve battalion; the regiment was formed through the merger of three single battalion regiments: The King's Own Royal Border Regiment The King's Regiment The Queen's Lancashire RegimentThe regiment was formed on 1 July 2006. On formation, the regiment contained three regular battalions, with each battalion being renamed: 1st Battalion, Queen's Lancashire Regiment – 1st Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment 1st Battalion, King's Regiment – 2nd Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment 1st Battalion, King's Own Royal Border Regiment – 3rd Battalion, The Duke of Lancaster's RegimentIn March 2007, the 3rd Battalion was disbanded, with its personnel dispersed to the other two, leaving the final roll of two regular battalions and one Reserve battalion.
The Duke of Lancaster's Regiment recruits personnel from Cumbria, Merseyside and the Isle of Man. The 1st Battalion is a light role infantry battalion based in Cyprus; the 2nd Battalion moved to Cyprus in August 2008 and as a resident battalion in Cyprus completed over 15 months on operations in Afghanistan as the Theatre Reserve Battalion from August 2009 to November 2010. The 2nd Battalion, which deployed to Afghanistan again between April and October 2013, is now a light role infantry battalion forming part of 42nd Infantry Brigade and Headquarters North West and is based at Weeton Barracks; the battalion will convert to a Specialised Infantry battalion, to provide an increased contribution to countering terrorism and building stability overseas. The Lancashire Infantry Museum is based at Fulwood Barracks in Preston. Infantry regiments are permitted to display 43 battle honours from the two world wars on the Queen's Colour and 46 honours from other conflicts on the Regimental Colour. Upon amalgamation, the Duke of Lancaster's Regiment had to choose from the total list of honours of its three antecedents which honours would be displayed on its new colours.
The chosen honours were: Queen's ColourMons. The regiment has brought forward a number of Golden Threads from its antecedents, as displays of its history and heritage: Lion of England – the English Lion, facing inwards as worn by the King's Own Royal Regiment, has been adopted as the regiment's collar badge; the Lion of England is known as the regiment's "Ancient Badge" and provides inspiration for the regimental nickname – first adopted by the 2nd Battalion in August 2009 – "Lions of England". The lion is used on the regiment's tactical recognition flash. Glider Flash – the glider awarded, 1949, as an honour to the Border Regiment, for glider landings in Sicily on 9 July 1943, is worn on the sleeve of No. 1 and No. 2 dress. The glider formed the regiment's tactical recognition flash from its formation until 2014. Fleur-de-Lys – the fleur-de-lys worn by the King's Regiment is featured on the regiment's buttons. Alongside a few other regiments in the British army that use traditional names other than Private for the lowest rank, the Duke of Lancaster's Regiment uses the rank Kingsman instead of Private, a tradition inherited from the King's Regiment.
Its use has been sanctioned since 1951, but it was informally used before this for over one hundred years. Regimental Colonels were as follows: 2006–2009: Major General Hamis
Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders
The Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders was a line infantry regiment of the British Army that existed from 1881 until amalgamation into the Royal Regiment of Scotland on 28 March 2006. The regiment was created under the Childers Reforms in 1881, as the Princess Louise's, by the amalgamation of the 91st Regiment of Foot and 93rd Regiment of Foot, amended the following year to reverse the order of the "Argyll" and "Sutherland" sub-titles; the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders was expanded to fifteen battalions during the First World War and nine during the Second World War. The 1st Battalion served in the 1st Commonwealth Division in the Korean War and gained a high public profile for its role in Aden during 1967; as part of the restructuring of the British Army's infantry in 2006, the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders were amalgamated with the Royal Scots, the King's Own Scottish Borderers, the Royal Highland Fusiliers, the Black Watch and the Highlanders into the seven battalion strong Royal Regiment of Scotland.
Following a further round of defence cuts announced in July 2012 the 5th Battalion was reduced to a single public duties company called Balaklava Company, 5th Battalion, Royal Regiment of Scotland. It was formed in 1881 by the amalgamation of the 91st Regiment and the 93rd Regiment as outlined in the Childers Reforms; the regiment was one of the six Scottish line infantry regiments, wears a version of the Government Sett as its regimental tartan. It had the largest cap badge in the British Army; the uniform included the Glengarry as its ceremonial headress. At the Childers reform amalgamation the Argyll and Sutherland Highlanders had a well-earned reputation for valour in the face of the enemy, most notably the 93rd during the Crimean War. Here, the 93rd earned the sobriquet of "The Fighting Highlanders" and carried with it the status of having been the original "Thin Red Line"; this title was bestowed following the action of the 93rd at Balaklava on 25 October 1854 in which this single battalion alone stood between the undefended British Army base at Balaklava and four squadrons of charging Russian cavalry.
The 93rd, under the command of Sir Colin Campbell, not only held steady, but for the first time in the history of the British Army, broke a large cavalry charge using musket fire alone, without having been formed into a square. This action was witnessed by the Times correspondent William Howard Russell, who reported that nothing stood between the Russian cavalry and the defenceless British base but the "thin red streak tipped with a line of steel of the 93rd" a description paraphrased and passed into folklore as "The Thin Red Line". Referred to by Kipling in his evocative poem "Tommy", the saying came to epitomise everything the British Army stood for; this feat of arms is still recognised by the plain red and white dicing worn on the cap band of the A and SH Glengarry bonnets. The 1st Battalion arrived in the Cape in November 1899 and formed part of the 3rd or Highland Brigade; the Argylls played leading roles in the Battle of Modder River, the Battle of Magersfontein, the Battle of Paardeberg and in an action at Roodepoort preceding the Battle of Doornkop.
In June 1900, the battalion was transferred to a new brigade under Brigadier General George Cunningham. They operated in the Eastern Transvaal. Sections of Argylls formed parts of the 2nd and 12th Battalions Mounted Infantry and a detachment, along with the Black Watch, formed an escort for Captain J E Bearcroft's naval guns during the advance to Pretoria. In 1908, the Volunteers and Militia were reorganised nationally, with the former becoming the Territorial Force and the latter the Special Reserve; the 1st Battalion landed at Le Havre as part of the 81st Brigade in the 27th Division in December 1914 for service on the Western Front. The 2nd Battalion landed at Boulogne-sur-Mer as part of the 19th Brigade, operating independently, in August 1914 for service on the Western Front; the 1/5th Battalion landed at Cape Helles as part of the 157th Brigade in the 52nd Division in June 1915. The 1/6th Battalion landed in France as part of the 152nd Brigade in the 51st Division in May 1915; the 1/7th Battalion landed in France as part of the 10th Brigade in the 4th Division in December 1914 for service on the Western Front.
The 1/8th Battalion landed in France as part of the 152nd Brigade in the 51st Division in May 1915 for service on the Western Front. The 1/9th Battalion landed in France as part of the 81st Brigade in the 27th Division in February 1915 for service on the Western Front; the 10th Battalion landed at Boulogne-sur Mer as part of the 27th Brigade in the 9th Division in May 1915 for service on the Western Front. The 11th Battalion landed at Boulogne-sur-Mer as part of the 45th Brigade in the 15th Division in July 1915 for service on the Western Front; the 12th Battalion landed at Boulogne-sur-Mer as part of the 77th Brigade in the 26th Division in September 1915 but moved to Salonika in Novembe
The Kokoda Track or Trail is a single-file foot thoroughfare that runs 96 kilometres overland – 60 kilometres in a straight line – through the Owen Stanley Range in Papua New Guinea. The track was the location of the 1942 World War II battle between Japanese and Allied – Australian – forces in what was the Australian territory of Papua; the track runs from Owers' Corner in Central Province, 50 kilometres east of Port Moresby, across rugged and isolated terrain, only passable on foot, to the village of Kokoda in Oro Province. It reaches a height of 2,190 metres; the track travels through the land of the Mountain Koiari people. Hot, humid days with intensely cold nights, torrential rainfall and the risk of endemic tropical diseases such as malaria make it a challenging trek. Hiking the trail takes between four and twelve days; the track was first surveyed in 1899 by Henry Hamilton Stuart-Russell in order to create a path from Port Moresby to the north coast of New Guinea. Stuart-Russell's group shot numerous local people as he encountered their opposition along his journey.
In particular, as they were approaching the Yodda Valley, indigenous resistance was met with rifle-fire with Stuart-Russell noting that the tribesmen, not being familiar with the effect of a bullet from a Martini-Henry or Snider rifle, they imagined their shields sufficient protection..the rifle practice, was too good and though they came on again and again..they were repulsed every time with loss The colonial government, having received messages of the surveyor's obstacles, sent Capt. Charles Monckton to resupply the group with food and troopers of the Native Constabulary. Monckton reached the surveyor's camp finding that they were barricaded in a log hut surrounded by local tribesmen. Monckton's force "swept away the surrounding natives" and as soon as "the rifle fire died away" they were able to unite with Stuart-Russell's group. Stuart-Russell discovered gold in the area which encouraged British and Anglo-Australian prospectors to enter the region, to become known as the Yodda Kokoda goldfields.
Due to conflict between these miners and the local tribes, the colonial paramilitary force, the Armed Native Constabulary, was ordered to enforce British rule in the region. From 1900, officers such as William Armit, Alexander Elliot and Archibald Walker led their troopers to crush any opposition, killing many villagers. Armit, a sub-inspector in the notorious Native Police force in Queensland, alone led a patrol that shot dead seventeen people in one village in the upper reaches of the Mambare River. In 1904, the colonial management decided to establish a government settlement to act as a base for the troopers and consolidate British rule; this station became known as Kokoda and from this base the Armed Native Constabulary was able to subdue the local population. Paths from Kokoda were made with forced labour from distant tribes. Government officer, Henry Griffin ordered that those who refused to labour were to be punished with the shooting of their pigs and stealing of their taro plants. Between July 1942 and November 1942, a series of battles, afterwards called the Kokoda Track Campaign, were fought between the Japanese and Australian forces.
This action was memorialised in the newsreel documentary Kokoda Front Line!, filmed by cameraman Damien Parer, which won Australia's first Academy Award for its director Ken G. Hall in 1942. After the war, the track disappeared in many places. John Landy, the long-distance runner, set a record of four days for the crossing using carriers and guides during the 1950s, in 1964 Angus Henry, the art teacher at Sogeri High School, along with two of his students, John Kadiba and Misty Baloiloi, set a new record, to stand until after the millennium by completing the journey in three and a quarter days without guides, carriers or any signposts or bridges. In 2006, the Owen Stanley Ranges and Kokoda Track was included on the Tentative List for World Heritage along with three other sites from PNG; the 1.5 million hectare property is a mixed cultural and natural site covering a significant proportion of the Owen Stanley Ranges and including the Kokoda Track, Managalas Plateau and Mount Victoria and Mount Albert Edward region.
The World War II battle sites were a key reason for cultural listing along with the unique cultures of the Koiari peoples. The Owen Stanley Ranges, through which the Kokoda Track passes, is one of the most biologically important areas in the Asia Pacific with over 4000 plant species and many endemic bird and animal species; the Kokoda Track Foundation, established in 2003, helps villages along the track with education and healthcare. There is a proposal to turn the track into an Australian heritage destination on a par with ANZAC Cove at Gallipoli. Creation of the heritage area, is in part a response to the issue of an Australian gold mining company wanting to mine on or near the track; as of 2007, the idea was backed by the Australian government and Papua New Guinea's foreign minister. In November 2007, Australian mining firm Frontier Resources announced plans to divert a section of the track to make way for a copper mine; the plan has the support of the local landowners and the Papua New Guinean government but has been criticized by trekking operators.
The track has been closed numerous times by villagers along the route in response to various grievances. In May 2009, villagers at Kovelo – near Kokoda village – blocked the track after complaints that money collected from trekking fees was not being distributed fairly. Since 2001, there has been a rapid increase in the number of people walking the track (
Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands
The Regional Assistance Mission to Solomon Islands known as Operation Helpem Fren and Operation Anode, was created in 2003 in response to a request for international aid by the Governor-General of Solomon Islands. Helpem Fren means "help a friend" in Solomon Islands Pidgin; the mission ended on 30 June 2017. Deep seated problems of land alienation dating from colonialism, unresolved after independence, have led to a number of compensation claims on land use. "The Honiara Peace Accord, signed by the warring parties, the government and the Commonwealth Special Envoy recognised several root causes of the conflict: Land demands – Guadalcanal leaders wanted all alienated land titles, leased to government and to individual developers, to be returned to landowners. Political demands – Guadalcanal wanted the establishment of a state government in order to have control over: the sale or use of local land. Compensation demands – Guadalcanal wanted payment for the lives of its indigenous people, who have been brutally murdered for their lands or for other reasons."The warring parties mentioned were the Solomon Islands Government, the Isatabu Freedom Movement and the Malaita Eagle Force led by, among others, Jimmy Rasta and Harold Keke.
A sizeable international security contingent of 2,200 police and troops, led by Australia and New Zealand, with representatives from about six other Pacific nations began arriving on 24 July 2003. Nick Warner assumed the role of Special Coordinator as leader of RAMSI, working with the Solomon Islands Government and assisted by a New Zealand Deputy Special Coordinator, Peter Noble, Fijian Assistant Special Coordinator, Sekove Naqiolevu. Major contributing nations to RAMSI include Australia, New Zealand, Papua New Guinea, Tonga. Pacific countries contribute to RAMSI including Cook Islands, Federated States of Micronesia, Kiribati, Marshall Islands, Niue, Papua New Guinea, Tonga and Vanuatu. Personnel from the Pacific countries are predominantly police officers served as part of RAMSI's Participating Police Force; the commander of "Combined Task Force 635" – the military element of the Mission – was Lieutenant Colonel John Frewen, commanding officer of the 2nd Battalion, Royal Australian Regiment, the deputy commander Major Vern Bennett, New Zealand Army, from Linton.
The Land Component included HQ 2 RAR from Townsville, 200 Australian infantry from 2 RAR, a Fijian rifle company from 3 Fiji Infantry Regiment, Queen Elizabeth Bks, a Pacific Islands Company, under an Australian Company commander, with Tongan, PNG, Australian rifle platoons. Supporting elements included eight Iroquois Helicopters, four each from 3 SQN, Royal New Zealand Air Force and 171 Operational Support Squadron, Australian Army, a PNG engineer troop, New Zealand engineer and medical elements, an Australian Combat Service Support Team, with some personnel from Army level troops from Sydney plus logistics personnel from New Zealand, four Australian Project Nervana Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for surveillance. In 2004, James Batley took over as Special Coordinator, followed by Tim George in late 2006. In 2005 New Zealander Paul Ash became Deputy Special Coordinator, followed by Dr Jonathan Austin in 2007. Mataiasi Lomaloma succeeded Naqiolevu as Assistant Special Coordinator in late 2005. Military personnel provide security and logistical assistance to police forces assisting the Solomon Islands Government in the restoration of law and order.
From November 2003, the military component was reduced, as stability returned to the country, a sizeable civilian contingent, composed of economists, development assistance specialists and budget advisors commenced the reconstruction of the government and finances of the Solomon Islands. The civilian contingent is now made up of around 130 personnel from many pacific countries, the most sizeable being Australia and New Zealand. Early successes included the stabilisation of government finances and normalisation of debt, as well as a number of economic reforms. Civilians in RAMSI are now focussing on capacity building of Solomon Islanders to take over the roles. Difficulties include the lack of available skilled Solomon Islanders. Former Solomon Islands Prime Minister Manasseh Sogavare was outspoken in his criticism of RAMSI, which he accused of being dominated by Australia and of undermining the Solomons' sovereignty. By contrast, his successor Prime Minister Derek Sikua has stated he supports RAMSI, has criticised his predecessor, saying in January 2008: "I think for some time in the last 18 months, the Solomon Islands government was preoccupied with finding fault in RAMSI."
Sikua has stated: " provide leadership that will work with RAMSI to achieve stated and agreed objectives for the long-term benefit of Solomon Islands. RAMSI is here on our invitation. Is important to Solomon Islands as it provides security, development of our police service, the strengthening of the capacity of government institutions."Sikua has asked RAMSI to assist the Solomons' rural areas "in the health sector and in the education sector as well as in infrastructure and other sectors to do with income generation and economic activities". A documentary film about the tension times and the RAMSI intervention was filmed in 2013, directed by Michael Bainbridge and Mark Power. In the early hours
Elizabeth II is Queen of the United Kingdom and the other Commonwealth realms. Elizabeth was born in London as the first child of the Duke and Duchess of York King George VI and Queen Elizabeth, she was educated at home, her father acceded to the throne on the abdication of his brother King Edward VIII in 1936, from which time she was the heir presumptive. She began to undertake public duties during the Second World War, serving in the Auxiliary Territorial Service. In 1947, she married Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh, a former prince of Greece and Denmark, with whom she has four children: Charles, Prince of Wales; when her father died in February 1952, she became head of the Commonwealth and queen regnant of seven independent Commonwealth countries: the United Kingdom, Australia, New Zealand, South Africa and Ceylon. She has reigned as a constitutional monarch through major political changes, such as devolution in the United Kingdom, Canadian patriation, the decolonisation of Africa. Between 1956 and 1992, the number of her realms varied as territories gained independence and realms, including South Africa and Ceylon, became republics.
Her many historic visits and meetings include a state visit to the Republic of Ireland and visits to or from five popes. Significant events have included her coronation in 1953 and the celebrations of her Silver and Diamond Jubilees in 1977, 2002, 2012 respectively. In 2017, she became the first British monarch to reach a Sapphire Jubilee, she is the longest-lived and longest-reigning British monarch as well as the world's longest-reigning queen regnant and female head of state, the oldest and longest-reigning current monarch and the longest-serving current head of state. Elizabeth has faced republican sentiments and press criticism of the royal family, in particular after the breakdown of her children's marriages, her annus horribilis in 1992 and the death in 1997 of her former daughter-in-law Diana, Princess of Wales. However, support for the monarchy has been and remains high, as does her personal popularity. Elizabeth was born at 02:40 on 21 April 1926, during the reign of her paternal grandfather, King George V.
Her father, the Duke of York, was the second son of the King. Her mother, the Duchess of York, was the youngest daughter of Scottish aristocrat the Earl of Strathmore and Kinghorne, she was delivered by Caesarean section at her maternal grandfather's London house: 17 Bruton Street, Mayfair. She was baptised by the Anglican Archbishop of York, Cosmo Gordon Lang, in the private chapel of Buckingham Palace on 29 May, named Elizabeth after her mother, Alexandra after George V's mother, who had died six months earlier, Mary after her paternal grandmother. Called "Lilibet" by her close family, based on what she called herself at first, she was cherished by her grandfather George V, during his serious illness in 1929 her regular visits were credited in the popular press and by biographers with raising his spirits and aiding his recovery. Elizabeth's only sibling, Princess Margaret, was born in 1930; the two princesses were educated at home under the supervision of their mother and their governess, Marion Crawford.
Lessons concentrated on history, language and music. Crawford published a biography of Elizabeth and Margaret's childhood years entitled The Little Princesses in 1950, much to the dismay of the royal family; the book describes Elizabeth's love of horses and dogs, her orderliness, her attitude of responsibility. Others echoed such observations: Winston Churchill described Elizabeth when she was two as "a character, she has an air of authority and reflectiveness astonishing in an infant." Her cousin Margaret Rhodes described her as "a jolly little girl, but fundamentally sensible and well-behaved". During her grandfather's reign, Elizabeth was third in the line of succession to the throne, behind her uncle Edward and her father. Although her birth generated public interest, she was not expected to become queen, as Edward was still young. Many people believed he would have children of his own; when her grandfather died in 1936 and her uncle succeeded as Edward VIII, she became second-in-line to the throne, after her father.
That year, Edward abdicated, after his proposed marriage to divorced socialite Wallis Simpson provoked a constitutional crisis. Elizabeth's father became king, she became heir presumptive. If her parents had had a son, she would have lost her position as first-in-line, as her brother would have been heir apparent and above her in the line of succession. Elizabeth received private tuition in constitutional history from Henry Marten, Vice-Provost of Eton College, learned French from a succession of native-speaking governesses. A Girl Guides company, the 1st Buckingham Palace Company, was formed so she could socialise with girls her own age, she was enrolled as a Sea Ranger. In 1939, Elizabeth's parents toured the United States; as in 1927, when her parents had toured Australia and New Zealand, Elizabeth remained in Britain, since her father thought her too young to undertake public tours. Elizabeth "looked tearful", they corresponded and she and her parents made the first royal transatlantic telephone call on 18 May.
In September 1939, Britain entered the Second World War. Lord Hailsham suggested that the two princesses should be evacuated to Canada to avoid the frequent aerial bombing; this was rejected by Elizabeth's mother. I won't leave wit